Truckee River Fishing Report

Truckee River

by Trout Creek Outfitters
(530) 563-5119

While it was unfortunate to see the water along 89 South remain so low last year, even after the second biggest recorded snowpack in history, the positive of the new management style of Lake Tahoe’s water levels is that the lake is already full this spring. We should see good flows along the upper river for the entire spring and hopefully throughout a good portion of the summer.

This new release regiment, which can be described as “release only as necessary”, has seemed to start this week as we are looking at 300 cubic feet per second coming out of the Tahoe City dam as of today. With plenty of snowpack remaining in the basin, we should see good fishing opportunities in the upper river through the spring and summer for the first time in several years. It will be interesting to see how this new plan affects releases of the downstream reservoirs Prosser, Boca and Stampede, which historically see huge swings in water levels on a yearly basis to supplement the flows along the majority of the river, satisfying the needs of Nevada’s water supply, agriculture, and Pyramid Lake to name a few.

Now, let’s talk fishing. The continual increase in flows over the last few weeks has brought with it only a slight increase in turbidity along most of the river so far this season, except for along 89 South where most of the water is coming out of Lake Tahoe and is therefore clear. Turbidity is not a bad thing, in fact, as long as it is not chocolate milk, using this diminished clarity to your advantage is how you can successfully land your largest fish of the year.

A decrease in visibility allows you to not only fish larger flies on larger hooks, but also means you can use heavier tippet such as 1x-3x depending on your section of river and the conditions of that particular day. If using streamers, think of your tippet in terms of pound test instead of diameter, 12-15 pounds is about right. Another big advantage is being able to get closer to the fish, because the dirty water will make them less likely to see you. When you couple this with the fact that they are found in the slow water along the banks right now, we think it becomes clear why we really like this time of year. The bugs used this time of year are straight forward. Things like stoneflies, worms, mop flies and eggs are all good choices. For streamers, go big and flashy flies or dark colors with lots of movement. If you’re fishing where there is more than a foot of visibility, try mixing in some things like duracells, blowtorches, frenchies, etc. 

If you would like to go fishing with us please check out our website Trout Creek or call (530) 563-5119.

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